BedZED Under the Spotlight: BioRegional Defends its Pioneering Project

Life is tough on the cutting edge, and the press can be unforgiving. We Treehuggers love the BioRegional Development Group, and we particularly love their flagship eco-housing estate BedZED, which we have reported on here and here. However, not everything has gone smoothly with this project. In particular they have had major problems with their prototype Combined Heat and Power plant, something we also picked up on here. These problems have now been highlighted by the mainstream press, who have shown an increased interest in green building following the UK government's recent announcement about carbon neutral homes. Apparently the Daily Mail ran a story under the rather unkind and, in our opinion, inaccurate headline of "Great Green Gimmick." However, BioRegional are now out to set the record straight.Sue Riddlestone, whom we interviewed here, has put out a statement explaining exactly what the problems have been, and why they have taken so long to solve. She states that they are working hard to become 100% carbon neutral again, but that they are taking their time to make sure the new equipment they install is appropriate and reliable. She also points out that, even without the CHP unit, the estate still creates 56% less carbon dioxide than similar conventional housing. She also argues that BedZED was one of the first developments of its kind, and BioRegional are building on the lessons learned from it to create the next generation of zero-carbon communities, such as their Mata de Sesimbra project in Portugal. Hopefully the press will cut them some slack, and recognise the significant progress that these guys have made in easing us all towards a brighter, greener future. [Written by: Sami Grover]

WHAT'S HOT ON FACEBOOK